Regulators Sue to Stop American Airlines-US Airways Merger, But Why Now?

The Justice Department's suit slows a steady tide of airline industry consolidation.

The Department of Justice argues the merger between American Airlines and US Airways 'threatens substantial harm to consumers' by eliminating competition.

The Department of Justice argues the merger between American Airlines and US Airways 'threatens substantial harm to consumers' by eliminating competition.

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Still, it may be too late for such a merger to be approved, says one expert.

"This industry is different than when Delta-Northwest went through or when United-Continental went through," says Diana Moss, vice president of the American Antitrust Institute. "I think we've kind of hit the wall on industry consolidation."